Cardinal Sodano Marks 25th Anniversary of Episcopal Ordination

ROME, JAN. 21, 2003 ( For Cardinal Angelo Sodano, Vatican secretary of state, the meaning of the priesthood is reflected in apostolic and missionary service — a contribution to the spreading of the Kingdom of God in the world.

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The cardinal expressed this conviction Saturday in the Basilica of St. Mary Major during a thanksgiving Mass for his 25 years of episcopal consecration.

Cardinal Sodano also expressed to John Paul II his “most profound gratitude for the trust he has placed in my humble person, along with the promise that, as cardinal of the Church and as secretary of state, I will continue to dedicate all my energies to the service of the Chair of Peter and for the good of the holy Church.”

Accompanied by representatives of the Roman Curia, civil authorities and numerous faithful, Cardinal Sodano addressed young religious, seminarians and novices attending the ceremony.

“Today’s world expects much from you,” he told them. “Looking toward the future, I invite all of you to go forward with confidence to proclaim to the world the Gospel of hope. Enveloped in goodness, gentleness, patience … be covered especially by charity, which is the bond of perfection.”

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